While you might be familiar with the more famous “Panisse“, these are the real McCoy.


Panisses are made from chickpea flour and shaped into hockey puck-sized disks. Once firm, their texture is similar to cooled polenta, and they’re cut into elongated bars and fried in very hot olive oil until crisp on the outside.

Lots of freshly-cracked pepper gets showered over them along with plenty of coarse sea salt.

They’re the perfect late-afternoon snack, along with an aperitif, before dinner…


(My Recipe for panisses)

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  • June 16, 2008 6:28pm

    nice romantic table setting! who’s invited!?

  • June 16, 2008 7:55pm

    They look so moorish, reckon I could eat a puck ot two of them.

  • Christy
    June 16, 2008 8:12pm

    You had me at chickpea flour. One of the greatest things about being married to an Indian guy (aside from him, two fabulous kids, and the calm life we lead) is the fact that he introduced me to chickpea flour. Love it!

  • June 16, 2008 8:22pm

    David- This sounds so good, my kind of snack. Hope you are having fun in the South of France, it is years since I have been there, imagine it is beautiful now.

  • June 16, 2008 8:25pm

    Would it be wrong to drizzle them with cider vinegar? They seem to be begging for it!

  • Charlene
    June 16, 2008 8:57pm

    Mmmm, Panisse Marseillaises!
    I’d love a recipe if you have one! I’ve had them once here in California, and found some “recettes en francais,” but a recipe from a trusted source would be great. :)
    Best regards,

  • Emily
    June 16, 2008 10:16pm

    Hi David —

    Couldn’t find a way to email you this comment or leave it on the archived post, but wanted to send a million thanks for your killer app candied peanut recipe. I made it exactly as stated (used a nonstick pan which worked great), it developed exactly like the pictures you posted, and best of all, THE TASTE! HEAVEN! Divine! Completely totally addictive! My dinner party guests were fighting over them…

    So many thanks…


  • June 17, 2008 12:36am

    Recipe? Please!?

  • June 17, 2008 3:31am

    Christy: yes, chickpea flour is one of the great flavors of Provence, and elsewhere. I can’t seem to get enough socca and panisses here. Am going out to find more today!

    Emily: Glad you liked the recipe as much as I do : )

    ChazFrench & Charlene: If you Google ‘socca recipe’ a few recipes in English turn up. I don’t think they’re all that difficult, either. Everyone here buys them from the local pasta shop, of which there are many. I’m going to experiment with them when I get home, too.

    Dana: I think you’d be run out of town if they caught you drizzling them with vinegar. The salt & pepper combo is just right.

  • June 17, 2008 8:08am

    What a great idea! I’ve never used chickpea flour, I guess I should get going!

  • June 17, 2008 11:04am

    Yum! Beany fries. I wonder how a drizzle of tahini sauce would do…

  • June 17, 2008 11:19am

    I had never heard of panisses until a few weeks ago, when they were offered as a side-dish. My dining partner asked the waiter, pointing at the menu, “What are panisses,” pronouncing the word like “pan-ees-iz”. The waiter looked at him, puzzled, and then corrected, “Oh, yes sir, you mean these? They are called more like pen-iss.”

    I must say, that put a new spin on dinner…

  • Mari
    June 17, 2008 3:15pm

    So THAT is what the chickpea flour is for. I didn’t really have a good explanation for why I bought it… 2yrs ago.

  • June 17, 2008 4:10pm

    How can it be that I’ve never heard of these before? We love falafel and hummous, so I’d love another thing to do with chickpeas. Thanks!

  • June 17, 2008 4:41pm

    Hi David,

    Just wanted to let you know that i really have gotten addicted to your blog! From the oh-so-useful substitution suggestions (I’m a young French American living in paris) to all your delicious international recipes, this is definitely part of my daily reading. Keep it up, it’s definitely making my workplace computer a happier place!…


  • Signe
    June 17, 2008 6:04pm

    I had no idea this is what Panisse meant. I wonder why chickpea flour has not been commonly used in the US. I love Indian pakora, which are vegetables dipped in a batter made of chickpea flour, spices, and water (and sometimes other ingredients like rice flour, beer, etc.). They are quick and easy to make and a great way to use up bits and pieces of veggies you may have in the fridge. Chickpea flour is also called “besan.” You can find a lot of recipes by googling pakora and you can see a demonstration of how to make them on YouTube. Thanks for telling us about Panisse and Socca!

  • June 17, 2008 6:29pm

    I had some soggy ones at brunch this sunday… yours look like they are snappy cripsy. yum. They really are the perfect snack.

  • June 17, 2008 8:22pm

    Oh, yes please.

    Still, I have to echo others here. Your recipe would be especially welcome, my friend. I have only five weeks until the baby arrives, and this gluten-free pregnant woman is now craving panisses.

  • June 17, 2008 9:56pm

    This was an inspiring post. I searched for a recipe online as soon as I saw your photo..chickpea fries, oh my. Super easy, super delicious and my husband and I enjoyed them for lunch. If apple cider is a *no no* then I will not tell you we had bbq sauce with ours..I won’t…because it might be going too far.
    Thanks for introducing Panisses and I, we are beginning a lovely relationship.
    oh, p.s., I didn’t have chick pea flour but I had dried chickpeas so I just whizzed them up in my blender, worked fine.

  • June 18, 2008 5:54am

    Chickpea flour dough…FRIED?!
    Doesn’t get much better than that.

  • Becky
    June 18, 2008 11:36pm

    i had these at Jean Georges restaurant Jojo! They were cutely stacked like little lincoln logs and tasted amazing!

  • Laura
    June 19, 2008 3:27am

    My kind of Panisses!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • June 19, 2008 10:11am

    Hi David, I’ve never heard of these before and am intruiged – they sound abosultely scrumptious and I can’t wait to try them out! I love how I always learn soething new whenever I drop in here. Now, if you’d be so kind to shoot out a recipe my way. I can slready see myself enjoying a big batch of these with some fabulous wine over the weekend! Cheers!

    Here’s a recipe online. Let us know how yours turn out! -DL

  • Peter
    June 20, 2008 1:37pm

    I grew up with Sicilian parents and on the occasional weekend my mother would make panelle which are pretty much identical to panisse. I just put on salt and make a sandwich on toast. Now when i make them for my wife and kids they put ketchup on them which bothers me, but the worst is my brother in law- he puts mayo on his sangwich.

  • Angela
    June 21, 2008 9:16pm

    I am a little slow on this one, but are panisses panelles in Italy?
    Recipe link.

    There are a couple of recipes listed under “chickpea fritters” or “panelles” on

    These look amazing! I have some chickpea flour in my freezer looking for a purpose. I think this is it!

  • David
    June 22, 2008 3:39am

    hi Angela: Yes, they’re pretty similar. I don’t think you need to deep-fry them, I just fried mine in a good amount of olive oil in a skillet. Enough to cover the bottom pretty well.

  • anothercatherine
    June 23, 2008 2:48pm

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    I’ve just made my first batch, and they were lovely. So light, and crisp, and sweet, and nutty! As you can tell, I loved them.

    I think I’ll love them even more with a garlicky, lemony mayonnaise, if that’s not sacrilege.

  • June 23, 2008 3:26pm

    Those look like french fries. Must we fry everything?

  • June 23, 2008 5:51pm

    Hmmm…These look yummy! I wonder how they would taste rolled in cinnamon sugar or powdered sugar? Maybe dipped in honey. I think I will try!

  • June 24, 2008 3:17am

    John: Actually, they’re often served to youngsters dredged in sugar, for dessert. I really like them with lots of crackly salt and fresh pepper myself. Maybe I’m just old : )

  • June 24, 2008 5:15pm

    These look absolutely dreamy!